All of our lodging in Ireland has been in bed and breakfasts with the exception of the Aspect Hotel Kilkenny. Why the exception? This was the one place locked in on our last Great Value Vacations package. Our first two nights were booked in Kilkenny while the last four were our choice.
I have to say that I was not looking forward to these two nights. Our family has loved the charm of bed and breakfasts and were weren’t sure a chain hotel would cut it. This being my parents’ first nights in Ireland, we wanted charm. We were also unclear on breakfast being available and well, were really worried about the lack of charm.
Pulling up the to hotel, we saw it was located in a commercial park with some stores I can’t remember and a KFC. Did I mention I was worried about lack of charm? It was raining, we were tired and hungry and a hotel surrounded by stores and a fast food chain we find at home was not charming.
We arrived at the hotel about 2 hours before normal check in. The people at the desk were very pleasant about it and within 20 minutes both of our rooms were ready. My husband grabbed some KFC while we settled in. The rooms were plain but clean and spacious. While the location was not charming, it was located near an Aldi (where we are able to get some snacks and drinks for our drives) and was a five minute drive to most of Kilkenny’s attractions.
It turned out breakfast was included with our rate (I’m not clear on all bookings, but it seems from the website that rooms with breakfast are available at a very reasonable rate). The breakfast was in the “full Irish” tradition, so we didn’t miss out by not being at a B&B. My parents could experience the Irish breakfasts right away. The buffet included fried eggs, blood pudding, tomatoes, cereals, breads with spreads and more. I think I remember wanting to take pictures and not getting the chance. Sorry.
Would we stay here again? In the end, it was really fine. We slept well and ate well. We got to attractions easily. And we even had KFC that one time. It turned out my mom liked staying in a regular hotel. She is fine sacrificing charm for a regular hotel stay and actually prefers it. So I would look at availability if we were passing through Kilkenny again. If we had an opportunity to stay at an Aspect in another Irish town, I would feel comfortable thinking my experience would be similar. In the end, the people were friendly and everyone liked the rooms. They were not haunted, which is more than I can say for the next place we stayed!